Chicago Prosecutor Positioned On Go away After Suggesting Adam Toledo Was Armed When Shot

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Top line

A Chicago prosecutor was on leave on Saturday for pointing out in court that 13-year-old Adam Toledo was holding a gun when he was fatally shot by police late last month while the video of the Toledo incident was unarmed appears to be pointing his hands up as the officer fired the fatal shot.

This image from the Chicago Police Department body cam video shows the moment in front of the Chicago Police … [+] Official Eric Stillman fatally shot and killed 13-year-old Adam Toledo on March 29, 2021 in Chicago.

Associated press

Key factors

A Cook County Attorney General’s spokesman Approved The Hill announced that Assistant State Attorney James Murphy was on leave Saturday morning after he “failed to fully establish the facts [Toledo’s] Death ”and that an internal investigation into the misleading statement has been commenced.

At a trial last week for Ruben Roman, the 21-year-old with Toledo on the night of his death, Murphy had suggested in his description of the shooting that the 13-year-old had a gun in his hand when he was shot by the Chicago policeman Eric Stillman.

“Toledo had a gun in his right hand when he turned to the officer,” Murphy said in court [Toledo]and hit him in the chest. The gun that [Toledo] had landed a few yards away against the fence. ”

The statement was widespread before it was partially rejected when it was released Thursday by a spokesman for Prosecutor Kim Foxx’s office who released the police body camera footage said Although the facts presented in court were correct, the wording of the testimony was misleading.

The footage from the police body camera appeared to show Toledo without a gun at the moment of his shooting, although The Chicago Tribune, which reviewed the footage in detail, reported that all the videos released by the police, when viewed in their entirety, show Toledo throwing away a gun the moment before the officer was shot.

The Cook County Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to questions from Forbes.

Crucial quote

“Such errors cannot occur and this was discussed with the person concerned,” said the prosecutor on Thursday when they initially refuted the statement. “The video speaks for itself.”

Chief critic

Adeena Weiss Ortiz, the lawyer for Toledo’s family, said at a press conference on Thursday that the 13-year-old had no weapon in his hand “in the last second of his life”. “I don’t know if the officer had enough time or not,” she said. “All I know is that the officer is trained not to shoot an unarmed person and not to shoot an unarmed child.”

What to look for

The family is considering filing a civil lawsuit against the city and the officials involved, Ortiz said.

Key background

Toledo was shot dead in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood on March 29th. Police arrived after the Chicago Police Department’s ShotSpotter, an artificial intelligence technology that detects and alerts police officers, detected gunfire in the area. At that point, Toledo, a seventh grader at Gary Elementary School, and Roman ran away from the responding officers. The footage from the police body camera shows Stillman putting Roman on the floor and then chasing Toledo down an alley and shouting, “Freeze, stop! Stop fucking right now! Hey show me your damn hands! “Toledo then turns to the officer and raises both hands, neither of which appear to be holding a weapon, as the officer fires a shot that hits Toledo in the upper chest. Toledo was pronounced dead at the scene. Stillman has been on administrative leave for 30 days, as has the department’s policies, while the Civilian Police Accountability Office investigates the shooting. It is unclear whether the officer will be charged.

further reading

“The Cook County attorney who was held responsible for misrepresenting the Adam Toledo shooting in court is on leave.” (Chicago Tribune)